Medicare Part B to drop in 2023

Looking for something positive to write about!!!!

Medicare Part B premiums will decrease to $164.90/month, beginning in January 2023.  Also being reduced slightly, is the Income Related Monthly Adjustment (IRMA) charge that so many of you pay.  The income brackets are also being expanded.  We will be sending out of 2023 “preliminary” Key Financial Data summary shortly.  The Key Financial Data will summarize your potential Medicare expenses.  As always, you can find the Key Data on our website here.

In addition, the annual deductible for Part B will decrease by $7.00 in 2023. Annual deductible will be $226.

The reason for the decrease in premiums and other parts was the estimated increase going into 2022 was overstated.  Costs have certainly not gone down.

For example, our group health plan renews on November 1st, with a whopping 14% increase in premiums.

To discuss your Medicare premium situation, please feel free to reach out to our office.

Celebrities Endorsing Investments

I find it hard to believe that I am even mentioning Kim Kardashian….  Early this morning, it was reported that she is being fined by the SEC over $1 million for a crypto-currency promo she did via Instagram. Apparently, the actual reason for the fine is non-disclosure of how much she was paid for the promo and the source. She was paid a mere $250k.

Quite frankly, celebrities (whether actors or sports figures) should be banned from endorsing any type of investment that has the potential to lose value.  It’s bad enough so many young voters will vote based on their favorite celebrity/influencer’s opinion of what’s best for our country. 

4th Quarter – Thank Goodness?

We are certainly glad the 3rd quarter is now behind us!  The 4th quarter has been up over 80% of the time, with average gains of approximately 4.6%.  Let’s hope this 4th quarter is a positive one!

Having a positive 4th quarter will not be a layup, be any means.

Last week, we heard the Fed’s favorite inflation gauge, the core PCE, rose to 4.9% in August (up from 4.6% in July).  The good news – that August data is over 1 month old.  Going forward, all inflation reports will have a significant impact.  Let’s hope the Fed’s extremely late, yet aggressive tightening, will show up in the numbers soon. 

On Friday, we’ll hear the jobs number from September.  The consensus is for a rise in new jobs by 225k, down from 315k in August.  It seems “un-American” to hope for a negative jobs number, however something will need to slow the Fed.

On Wednesday, OPEC meets with the rumor – they want to now decrease output which will of course, put upward pressure on oil/gasoline.  I’m simply amazed that in 2022, we still even care about OPEC.  I’m sure you know what I’m referring to.  Regardless of political affiliation, most clients I speak with believe we should have been truly energy-independent years ago.  We should also be in a position to help our allies over the pond, and make profits from doing so.

For me, the telling tale for the market will start in a couple of weeks, when 3rd Quarter profit reports start being released.  The speculation is, how far profit estimates need to be reduced because of the Fed raising rates/slowing the economy. If profit estimates are significantly reduced, equity prices will have more room to drop.

The next Fed meeting will be on November 2nd, with mid-term elections immediately thereafter. 

The good news is that each week, we are one week closer to getting through the current economic/market situation.  As my glass is temporarily half-empty, my confidence is very high that it will soon become half-full!

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